Jun
10

A subtle distinction

June 10, 2016, by

Photo Credit: @GraphicComments

With the Sharks 4-2 win last night in game 5, the 2015-2016 season lasts just a little bit longer. Once Lord Stanley has found his summer home, we move on proper to the business of improving the New York Rangers. Much digital ink has been spilled, including some stellar pieces around these parts, about who should stay or go, cap math and statistical analysis. This morning, I want to talk about some subtle distinctions.

I was having a beer with a buddy of mine yesterday afternoon. I grew up playing with this guy, and we been friends and Rangers fans for over 20 years. We started talking about the team; who we liked, who was overpaid, who should be shipped out and replaced in an effort to re-tool the roster back to a legitimate contender. It occurred to me during this conversation, partly because of our dynamic, that it kind of sounded like those old school scouting conversations. He isn’t much of an advanced stats guy, so we were talking like it was the 90’s.

Honestly, it was fun. I enjoyed the talking hockey and bringing the concept of fandom back to basics, water cooler style. We had our assessments of player’s talent levels and what their strengths and weaknesses were. How players drove possession or their production at even strength was never really part of the conversation.

We spoke about I had a guy on my team this season, who had played a scoring role at a prominent D3 program just a couple years ago tell me that he liked Tanner Glass “because he brought some sandpaper” to the lineup. My mind was blown. I could not get my head around the fact that this guy played the game at a comparatively high level, followed the Rangers closely and could arrive at this conclusion.   Even at the ripe old age of 27, he lamented the changing game and the lack of toughness and edge of the current crop of NHL’ers.

It made me begin to think about the analysis that we do here (analyzing analysis: Inception!) and I found that people’s opinions of a players’ capabilities typically break down into two groups: “does the player conform my idea of what makes a player good?” and “did the player objectively perform”. There are obviously additional considerations within each of those concepts, but that was the framework.

When I left the bar it kind of hit me (or the 4 other beers; whose to say, really?) that so much of the perspective of hockey fans is derivative of how they want to view the game. Some people want to yell at the little men on their televisions, calling the ones who blow scoring chances “bums” and the ones who bury the biscuit on command “clutch”. It makes them happy and gives them something to talk about at the office or job site or on the Internet the next day. Some people like to watch the games and be angry that it isn’t played the same it was “back in the day”, “when men were men” and all that crap. For the record, anyone who can take a 200+lb man or a 100mph puck careening into his body over and over again is very much a man.

I feel like the distinction between preferences for a player’s style, perceived lack of specific type of production, clutchness, toughness and all that stuff and measurable performance gets lost around here sometimes. If you think that Tanner Glass is a misunderstood throwback to a better era of hockey, more power to you. Here, we draw broad strokes conclusions about a player’s talent level by virtue of their performance. Those who disagree will dismiss those performance measurements to maintain their position on the player’s talent level. It becomes a seesaw that never stops until you stumble off nauseously to do something more productive.

I guess my point is, this summer is going to be one of (presumably) massive change for the Rangers. I have a feeling that the comments section is going to be hot garbage at times. Since you all know that I have a penchant for long-winded speeches, I suppose this is just a 700-word preamble for the following advice for summer 2016:

1. To the pro-stats crowd: Analysis is good. Understand what you are measuring and the conclusions you draw from those measurements. You are measuring performance. You are also measuring performance that is not all encompassing, although there are some very smart people working to close those gaps. You are not measuring talent or creating a recipe on how to bake a Stanley Cup winning roster. Don’t be inherently dismissive to other people’s opinions, just because you know the facts back you up. Hear them out. I believe that stats are a good thing and using them to become an academic snob about hockey is not a great way to get the mainstream fan to accept them.

2. To the anti-stats crowd: Knowledge is good. Using the “eye test” for everything, just because you don’t care to learn about a stat or if it’s valuable, is just as arrogant as waiving a spreadsheet in your opponent’s face. Also, when someone uses a statistic to backup a theory about a players performance and value, don’t just say “all these stats are a bunch of garbage” to de-value the analysis. Advanced metrics are far from perfect. If you feel the analysis you are reading is flawed because of a weakness in the stat, bring up that point like a civilized human being.

Eventually, there will be a melding of both perspectives as the stats get better and the realities of what makes a championship team in the modern era becomes more engrained in hockey’s culture. Until then, I’m just trying to prevent WWIII around here this summer. I’m sure that will go swimmingly.

"A subtle distinction", 5 out of 5 based on 11 ratings.
Categories : Offseason, Uncategorized

51 comments

  1. Alec says:

    Re: Salary Cap
    if the cap this season was $71.5mm, a 5% escalator is $3.55mm, leading to a new cap number of $75mm and change. The players give up more in escrow if the numbers are right(but this year I doubt it with the rebounding $CDN.)

  2. Alec says:

    Both sides aren’t the be all end all of analysis, but when one doesn’t jibe with the other further research is warranted.

    Kevin Hayes is the living embodiment of this. Basic stats didn’t look so hot, fancy stats say there’s a better player hidden in there. There’s a kernel of truth that he is outperforming his minutes played, but the eye test tells you why he wouldn’t thrive with more minutes and those are the gaping holes in his all around play.

    • Hatrick Swayze says:

      I always say ‘doesn’t jive’….. have I been doing it wrong all along?

    • Dave says:

      Hayes seems to be the polarizing player this year. My issue with the “Hayes stinks” crowd is that they think he is lazy because he gives doofy interviews and doesn’t move his legs quickly. But as a taller skater, he doesn’t need to move his legs as fast as a smaller guy. Ever notice that the smaller guys are always the hard workers? There’s a theme here.

      Did Hayes regress a bit from last season? Absolutely. Is he a bad hockey player? Nope.

      • 43 says:

        No one here think Hayes is an untalented player, nor have I seen anyone discredit him on here because he seems to be a dumb jock in his interviews.

        The consensus here, and what AV said in a press conference, is in spite of all his skill, at times throughout the season, Hayes lacked effort and seemed altogether uninvolved. He went from a promising young talent to an unreliable depth player in one year. That and he can’t win a faceoff to save his life.

        What it is is that he is really talented. I remember him doing a number of things his rookie year that were well beyond his years, he has a lot of hockey smarts, but like his buddy Kreids, his skills haven’t matured and manifested on the ice.

        But because Hayes is tall, he doesn’t have to work as hard or harder than Zuccarello, right?

        • Hatrick Swayze says:

          I think you’re missing the point on height. In any event, we all recognize the skill he has and how he can influence a score sheet when he is on his game. Given that, despite a pedestrian year, wouldn’t it be prudent to see if he can play in year 3 like he did in year 1?

          And it’s not even like he is a detriment to his team when he isn’t scoring like he did in his rookie yr. While it’s not optimal, his subliminal stats show that he doesn’t bleed away goals or shot attempts.

          Barring an advantageous trade, he seems like a prime candidate to bring back on an affordable 2 yr bridge deal.

          Everyone clamors for youth but doesn’t want to live with the growing pains. It’s frustrating, irresponsible and relatively disingenuous.

          • 43 says:

            I get the point Dave’s making about height, but I found the comment ironic given people’s dissatisfaction with Hayes’ effort.

            I never said to get rid of Hayes. I guess sit looks like I’m campaigning against him lately. Truthfully my sentiments about Hayes are what a lot of people about Kreider: a talented young player that could be a really good NHLer if they only mature and play with some real hustle.

      • Bob-O says:

        I can’t stand the issues people have with Hayes. He’s not the 1st player in NHL history to have moderate to star success in their rookie season, only to regress in year 2.
        There’s a ship load of factors that go into a players Sophmore year. Chief among them are that the NHL has now studied you and found your strengths and weaknesses. Teams write a book on you and it’s now up to Hayes to work on things to beat that book.
        Even Ovechkin had a point where D were taking away his 2 moves and he had a down year a couple seasons back. Still may have broke 30 goals but he came back with a vengeance the last 2 years.
        I will be interested to see what Hayes does in year 3. We will see what kind of player he is this year. Will he put the work in to get back to being a 50 point Centerman or is he just a flash in the pan the NHL figured out and shut down.

        We should not be eager to sell off 24 year old forward’s, regardless of position (W or C). Hayes value is down a bit from where he was after his rookie season. As an armchair GM, I would try to use Hayes season against him in contract talks and lock him up to a cheap 2 year bridge deal.

  3. amy says:

    and there was no consistency in his play put him with guys that will give him the puck and let him do what he is good at

  4. SalMerc says:

    Justin, your overall narrative is true. Take for example the much maligned Tanner Glass. I went to a few home games and had the luxury of sitting close enough to the ice to get a “feel” for the game. TG brought an energy to the ice that was contagious with his teammates. He hit everything in sight. He skated hard and gave 110% every shift. Did he score any goals, no, but he played with an energy level that not only got the fans into the game, but got his own team into the game, The score sheet reflected another “nothing night” but he had value out there. Take last nights Pens/Sharks game. Through 2 periods, Cindy Crosby didn’t score any goals, but played hard and threw his body around, the difference is that he is an excellent passer and puts the puck on the blade of his teammates and sets them up countless times. He is an instigator and a pain to play against, but it is his talent that is the deciding factor. We (the NYR) need guys with talent AND an edge. Some guys who pass the eye test AND show up in the charts.

    BTW – Kevin Hayes may be ready to step up to a higher level, but if someone makes me the right offer, I would jump at moving him, as I think we gave him 2 years of try-outs.

    • Dave says:

      We won’t see eye to eye on Glass, so let’s move on to Hayes.

      If NYR move one of Step/Brass, it doesn’t really make sense to move Hayes, a young cost controlled center, especially if he may be ready to make that next step.

      But like with everyone on the roster, if the right offer is made, I’d move him. I’d move anyone on the roster for the right offer.

      • SalMerc says:

        We need more that tweaks to this roster. A Hayes move is a tweak. A Brassard/Stepan/Nash move would be more than a tweak and should bring back a greater return. I think we need an infusion of scoring on the top 9, maybe 3 players including Buch.

        I also think we need a puck moving defenseman (duh, who doesn’t). How we assemble those parts is anyone’s guess.

        Come to my house, be one of the comfortable people!

        • Dave says:

          Step is only 25, he’s still young.

          And the best puck mover on the team is being let go. Sigh.

        • Chris A says:

          You are overthinking it Sal. The Rangers have more than enough scorers. They need guys on the backend that can get them the puck quickly and in advantageous positions.

          The Rangers don’t need to replace the D because they can’t defend, they need to replace the D because the puck moves up the ice far too slowly.

          Fix the blue line and you fix the Rangers.

          • Fotiu is God says:

            “Hey babe, you can hang up on Columbo. Chris just nailed the culprit(s).”

            I. Sanguinetti, Bobby: washout.

            II. MDZ: run out.

            Had we developed, or managed our last two puck moving D-men prospects with more alacrity–and Mike Sauer not been forever sidelined–I strongly believe, Chris, we add one more Cup.

            The Wings successfully transitioned from one superb passing D-man, Nicky Lidstrom, to Rafalski; and now to Mike Green. Who’s not the same Mike Green.

            The Wings are reaching, just as we are. That quick, uptempo D-to-O transition game, keyed by a skilled D-man is everything.

            • Chris A says:

              Yes Nicky, (and I am calling you Nicky from now on whether you like or not!) that’s why lots of fans were annoyed when McIlrath was drafted instead of Cam Fowler. You can never have enough young puck moving Ds.

              I’m with you a thousand percent on MDZ and Sauer. If those two managed to stick around this team would be in a far better place.

              Girardi would have been dealt at the same time as Callahan and Stralman would have been retained because Dan Boyle would never have been necessary.

              Damn, it’s too nice a day to be thinking about depressing Rangers’ alternate universes.

              • Fotiu is God says:

                Totally good with being addressed as Nicky.

                Before the ex-wife’s morphine or dilaudid wore off, I told the nun in the maternity ward our son’s name was Nicky. (For Fotiu).

                Hell, if my eight-year old had black hair I’d have him cut it like Fotiu’s. Or Johnny/Dee Dee Ramone.

                Forasmuch, since we can’t access Peabody’s Wayback Machine–to do-over the Sangs’ and MDZ miscues–we’ll have to realistically acquire a skilled D-man.

                Stony Sal’s high on Klingberg; me, I’m preferential to the Finn, Sami Vatanen.

                Where do see us going, Chris?

        • Fotiu is God says:

          You making brownies?

      • Swarty says:

        It’s a crapshoot any way that you look at it.

        They could move Steph/Brass and Hayes if they get back a quality center.

        Or they could move one and keep Hayes and find that he regresses even further.

        This off-season is full of very difficult choices. But they have to be made. Let’s just hope things go our way when all is said and done.

    • BenM says:

      I don’t think anyone would argue that TG didn’t hit enough or didn’t try hard enough.

      The issue is that by going for hits, TG would regularly take himself out of position which led to offensive zone breakouts and continued defensive zone pressure by the other team. This is not an equation that leads to team success.

      The most successful fourth lines are those that can sustain offensive zone pressure. TG is the opposite of that as both the eye test and fancy stats would show.

    • RANGERS_UNDERSCORE says:

      I would agree with you if I wanted to lose. Glass plays hard with zero benefits. What does that get us? A goal? An assist? A win? No! Why do you want to suffer?

  5. Hatrick Swayze says:

    Justin, we all know that there is no such thing as a hockey conversation that doesn’t include how players drove possession or their production at even strength.

    Like the t shirt i used to have as a kid said…. (advanced stat) hockey (metrics) is life…..the rest is just details

    • Justin says:

      Hah, thank you Hatrick. I actually laughed out loud reading that.

      • Hatrick Swayze says:

        That’s what I’m here for. Happy to add value and if i can’t do that, provide comedic relief.

        While I’m at it, the other T shirt I had read

        Born to Eat
        Born to Sleep
        Born to (crunch numbers while watching those who) Play Hockey

  6. joe719 says:

    I really don’t see “massive” changes this summer. I believe they NEED “massive” changes, but I just don’t think mgmt is ready to do that; just yet. I’m looking for one significant move—maybe Nash, Staal or a Brassard gets moved–but other than that, I see them mixing and matching with what they have, and maybe adding a few pieces at the .99 aisle at the FA store. AV is still the coach. If they were going to totally rebuild, I wouldn’t think he would want to be a part of that. And, I think if they were going to change the whole roster, it would probably include the breath of fresh air that would come from a new coach. So far, they’ve given no indications that they’re ready to go in a different direction than AV’s.

    • Hatrick Swayze says:

      What about his own ‘last kick at the can’ comments made throughout the course of the season?

      And what would you look for as far as indications that they’re ready to go in a different direction? Splashes don’t usually happen until around draft day so it’s not like they’ve been quiet when the rest of the league has been making moves. Don’t the Friedman, McKenzie, Brooks reports and ramblings kind of bode well for the Rangers making some changes?

      • joe719 says:

        Articles are written, sometimes, to get reactions. It gets frustrating to reporters, I would think, when mgmt remains silent. That creates a lot more speculation. As for AV’S comments, what was he gonna’ say?—‘Lets not sacrifice more youth and picks’—when he knew that was exactly what his bosses intended to do? To me, a big indication that they want to move in a new direction would be AV’s dismissal—and so far—there has been no indication of that. I can see changes coming, just not the big sweeping changes a lot of us might hope for.

        • SalMerc says:

          Guys, if we don’t make some major changes, look forward to another ho-hum year and a quick first round exit. If that is what you want (again) then so be it. I would rather have a down year, move a few large contracts, gain some flexibility and play some kids (no not Hayes, he had his chance) and some first rounders (imagine a world where we actually had one) and prime the engine for a 2017-18 run. You want to keep Stepan, fine, then move Brassard and Nash, and get me a young sniper and a speedy defenseman and a first-rounder and cap flexibility. Then, who knows what happens at the deadline.

          • joe719 says:

            Hey, I agree—I just don’t think mgmt is ready to cut the cord completely with the core of this team and start over. AV is on the 4th yr of a 5yr deal. I can’t imagine the prospect of fielding a team of youngsters and newcomers—with the very real possibility of missing the Playoffs—–would appeal to him. If that is the plan, then IMO, mgmt would cut the cord with him and start over. I haven’t seen any signs that they’re ready to sever the relationship with him just yet. That is why I believe any changes made will be incremental, over time—-still giving them a chance to compete and surprise, with no real expectations of a championship. Now, Gorton could surprise us, and put his stamp on the team with some sweeping changes—I just don’t really expect that the Garden will let him.

  7. Roger Domal says:

    Well done Justin.

    I’m glad Pens didn’t win last night as I was not ready for the season to be over just yet.

    Anyway, I have been reading a lot about other teams. We tend to thing of the Rangers in a vacuum, like we are the only club with problems. There are teams in far worse cap, defense, offense and goaltending shape than us.

    Pick a team, any team. Ok, Islanders? Their Captain is coming off a not so great year, and they are going to lose a good to,decent winger toFA. Nick Leddy regressed and his CA has increased by 700 (!) attempts in 2 years!! And they have two average goalies at over age 30 when the trend is for 22 year old goalies.

    The Red Wings are in serious old age hell with the chance of having real dead cap space on the books for awhile.

    I could go on and on. The ice is not always smoother some place else.

  8. Walt says:

    I’m not a big stats fan, but it’s great to compare players against each other, other than just the eye test…..

    As for my ideal players, they should be fast, fast, fast…… They also should be fast, have size, skill, and when push turn to shove, well, they should have enough grit as to have the next guy who may want to challenge him, think twice. I’m not into goonery, but there is a place for the nasty stuff, should someone stupid enough try to take liberties, well then, they should be put in a situation where they risk loosing a few teeth. These guys are few, and far between !!!!!

  9. Swarty says:

    As you alluded both Stats and the “eye test” have their pros and cons.

    Stats can tell you a lot about historic performance in virtually every situation, But they only tell you about what is measured.

    Shots, Goals, Penalties, Possession, Relative this and Relative that. And you can even break down all of these things per/60 minutes, which itself, is one of the most misleading measurements of them all.

    Only an eye-test can tell you who is crashing the net, who is making the first crisp pass out of the zone, who is running down opponents to negate icing, and most of all, who is a “leader” and who is not.

    Personally, I’ve been trying to get a better handle on them so as to be a bit more informed.

    Bottom line however is that stats are useful in the big picture and perhaps in some very focused ways but when used as the “end-all/be-all” then they become troublesome.

    Lies, Damn Lies, and Statistics…..

    • Fotiu is God says:

      Gospel: Coach Walt, Swarty.

      Foreground to background now. As a freelance journalist of 22-years, ten years prior as an editor, I give high marks across the board to our colleagues: the Dave’s and Justin’s who frame and pour themselves into these fluid discourses each day.

      Re the day’s discussion: I think we know each other well enough–albeit virtually–Coach Walt and Swarty, that we instinctively close ranks more with Group II than I.

      Inasmuch, the whole possession metric does resonate more than any other stat the young smart dudes here tend to run with.

      To you Dave, Justin, et al.: a simple thanks, from a fiercely old school/Eddie Shore/Toe Blake type for that singular bit of hockey IQ expansion.

  10. Jon says:

    Amen brother. I’m in the 1st group of people you mentioned. I admit that I hold my nose a little high at times with the stats. I feel they give me factual evidence to backup my opinion of a player. Still, what a person sees in a players game like hustle, work ethic, and character can never be quantified by fancy statistics.
    I will remember that and try my best to not blow off someone’s opinion simply because they don’t have a stat to back it up. Good stuff and let’s go Rangers. The one thing we all have in common (Stats crowd and the anti-stats crowd) is we are all Ranger fans. That’s what matters most.

    PS I also thought Tanner Glass had a pretty good season. Without looking at the stats, he got in on the forecheck hard this past season and gave the Rangers some “push back” against the bigger, tougher teams. He skates really well for a big grinder and with 2 forward’s that drive possession well, I think he can be utilized to better serve the Rangers needs. I agree he was horrible in 14/15 for whatever reason but that’s in the past. He’s here and not much we can do but hope he’s used in the best way possible.

    • Fotiu is God says:

      … But better keep the Tanner Glass praise on the D/L here, Jon.

      Like newbies at an S&M party, we’re on the receiving end of obsessive if not near atavistic abuse.

  11. Ray says:

    Brilliant and fun article.

    Stats in hockey do have a real problem. I personally don’t like Tanner Glass, but let me defend him for a minute. I’ll also romanticize him a bit since I’m not really talking about Tanner Glass. We have a guy who goes out there ten minutes a game and hits everything in sight – hard. But the numbers — and it doesn’t matter whether you look at Corsi or +/- — tell us he is ineffective. And the eye test tells us that there is nothing flukish about those numbers.

    I am reasonably convinced that the numbers are describing a real phenomenon, that it is a disadvantage to have Glass on the ice. But what about the other 50 minutes. Stats presume that he has no effect on those fifty minutes —- but he actually does. For one thing, all those hits wear down the opposition and they become less effective. For another thing, the opponents don’t always know when Glass is on the ice. [never played hockey but I can’t imagine players always know which players they are opposing] And in the back of their mind there is the possibility of a Glass hit against them.

    Not you Justin, but many here are old enough to remember the touring Russian national team in the 1970s. They beat all of the NHL teams until they went up against the Broadway Bullies. The Flyers basically didn’t try to score for the first two periods. They just hit everything that moved. Then in the third period, while the Russians were looking around for the next hit, they scored a bunch of goals and won.

    Establishing the tone of the game and scoring and preventing goals are actually two different things and it is not necessary to do both at the time.

    • Walt says:

      Ray

      “The Broad Street Bullies” literally ran that team off the ice, and when Ed Snyder said they weren’t going to get paid, they came back to finish the game. The Russians had never played a team that rough, and probably were sorry they ever did….

      Great point by the way !!!!!!!!!!!!

    • roadrider says:

      I saw that Philly – Russian game and frankly the Flyers should have been heavily penalized for the goon tactics they employed (nothing new there – and they still haven’t changed much). The hit that sent the Russians off the ice was blatant interference and could even be called intent to injure (like Clarke did with his slash on Valeri Kharlamov in the Summit Series). I don’ t remember if the Flyer was actually penalized (I think it was Ed Van Impe).

      Hitting within the rules is one thing. Blatant intimidation tactics that violate rules are quite another. I don’t think Glass does that (much) but I would be very happy never to see anything like the Broad St. Bullies again.

      • Walt says:

        That is one of many reasons I hate the Flyers, and their ownership….

        I believe now that Snyder has passed away, we may see a change in their game as well, he was behind that mind set big time !!!!!

        I remember an interview where Ed Snyder was so upset during the PO’s, where his undersized team was man handled, that the following year he stated it will never happen again, and we were introduced to the Broad Street Bullies era, and the filth there after !!!!!

  12. Alec says:

    Hayes holes in his game have to do with a distinct lack of knee bend in his skating.

    It limits power generated in his 1st step, so if he’s caught deep in the zone on a turnover it’s impossible for him to get back, assuring continued odd man pressure at the other end. That lack of 1st step forces him to cheat in his own end if there is a breakout when he’s at C, which leads to blown assignments.

    It limits his ability to lower his level to lay on a hit. The April 9 game against Detroit, he had a guy lined up to hit, should’ve bombed him through the boards. Instead, because he was upright with a narrow base, the bigger man bounced off his opponent like he hit a pinball bumper.

  13. roadrider says:

    The problem with “advanced” stats is that you guys try to use them to ask us if we’re going to believe them or our “lying eyes”. I’m absolutely certain that you can concoct some analysis that shows that Hayes actually performed well but I’m equally sure that his defensive indifference, poor play away from the puck (bad positioning, blown assignments), lack of effort on back checking at times and Kovalev-like meanderings that probably boost his possession numbers but all too rarely result in goals or even quality scoring chances are somehow overlooked in those calculations.

    I don’t think Hayes sucks or is untalented or should be traded. I do that he’s still developing, is somewhat immature in his approach to the game, lacks concentration at times and needs an occasional kick in the ass or seat in the press box to get his attention. But there is a lot of talent there and potential there and selling low on Hayes at this point would be a mistake (selling high might not be). Give him until the trade deadline next spring to figure it out and then move on if there’s been no improvement.

    • Ray says:

      The problem with all evidence is that it can be misused. That’s nothing new about advanced stats. One new drawback though is that there is just so much of it that those who pick and choose have more to choose from.

      The real intrinsic problems though are twofold. One is, as Justin measured, they only measure part of the game. The second is that while they are based on larger samples and so we see far less sample size error than with +/-, there is sample size error and when we look at a small number of games or situations that occur for a small number of minutes, these numbers too become meaningless.

  14. RANGERS_UNDERSCORE says:

    You forgot the 3rd group of people that somehow can see the problems but prefer to accept the coach is in fallible and defer to his superiority. They cast away logic and the eye test and history and say he came close a couple of times which make him the most qualified. After 3 years of watching inexcusable mistakes defend him and say you never coached at that level and you can not analyze what happened through the TV.
    This group I call the Leopold group, lack in winning experience and support failure. This group will stick with the cancer and kill the body. They are Dr Kevorkians who hate winning, they see death as good failure as likely. Get rid of the good players and keep the Glass! How long do we have to suffer with the Leopold group? We don’t need the Cup! We have the Glass!

  15. Alec says:

    If you wanted to measure Glass’ impact as a banger, they should measure cumulative possession stats after his shifts along with his actual shift.

  16. Andy says:

    I like fancy stats; I do. I just don’t always agree with the inferences made from them. Possession and shots happen because of numerous factors often out of the control of the player. To credit or disparage a player ONLY because of stats is absurd.

    As for Glass – I too think his salary would be better spent elsewhere. However, I kinda understand the logic behind him. Discussion of stats, shots against, etc. is irrelevant to a player like him, because his role is just to hit and occasionally fight. Now, whether those “skills” are useful is, of course, debatable. But applying the same metric upon him that you would, say, Stepan, is silly. They are two completely different people with two completely different purposes on the roster.

  17. AD says:

    The comments from Joe719 halfway up the page is what concerns me the most: that management is not going to make significant changes, but rather maybe 1 high profile player will be moved and some changes around the edges of the team, but that is it.

    It’s the worst course of strategy, in my view, but as I read and comment about all of the significant changes that will be made to the team going forward, what I lack is any confirmation from management this will indeed happen. The trade for Eric Staal was horrible but even worse, it suggests management is in denial about the quality of this roster. Gorton messed up royally in that trade; happens to every GM but what bothers me most is he actually thought this team was worthy of making that type of trade.

    Someone needs to slap Gorton across the head a few times before we miss another big window to advance the team and organization forward.

  18. John says:

    You been a fan how many years? Ha ha minor fans. You guys seen nothing. Been Rangers fan since 1969